Pin Oak

by Sarah Henry

The tree in my yard
is clamorous.
It riots each fall,
shouting,
“Look at me!”
The racket never stops.
It runs on in perpetuity
like an endowed chair
or attention to a grave.
Jays call from
the branches, noisily.
Squirrels abound.
Leaves cover the ground.
I’m a raking machine.
This afternoon
will end soon.
Panting, I rake faster.
The leaves become
waves heaving
to a curb like a shore.
There are more where
they came from,
making the usual
demands. As always,
I knuckle under
to their weight.


Sarah Henry studied with two former United States Poet Laureates at the University of Virginia. Her recent work appears in Rue Scribe, American Writers Review, and Pure Slush. Sarah is retired from a newspaper and lives in a small Pennsylvania town without distractions.